The San Francisco Giants got themselves into trouble with some shoddy infield defense in the middle innings, but racked up four runs off the Arizona Diamondbacks new, but apparently not improved, bullpen, capped by Buster Posey’s tie-breaking two-run homer in the top of the ninth for a 9-8 win on Opening Night at Chase Field in Phoenix.
The Giants led 1-0 before the defense let down Madison Bumgarner, making his first career Opening Day start.
Brandon Belt kicked a leadoff grounder by Mark Trumbo and Pablo Sandoval followed that up by mishandling a grounder by Miguel Montero. Chris Owings singled to load the bases and Gerardo Parra got Arizona on the board with a two-run single to right. Posey had a shot to get the trail runner, Montero, but dropped the ball in front of the plate as he hurried to make the tag, which allowed the runners to move up to second and third with no one out.
The Giants got a run back in the fifth. Michael Morse worked a leadoff walk and went to third on Brandon Crawford’s double to center. After Joaquin Arias grounded out, Gregor Blanco hit for Bumgarner and grounded out to second base, allowing Morse to score.
But Arizona bounced back with two in the bottom of the fifth off reliever Yusmeiro Petit. Martin Prado led off with a double to right and scored on Trumbo’s single. After singles by Montero and Owings loaded the bases, Parra drove in a run on a fielder’s choice on a play where Arias couldn’t record an out after fielding the ground ball.
Brandon Belt made it 6-3 with a homer to right off McCarthy to lead off the sixth, but Trumbo drove in a run with a single in the bottom of the inning.
The Giants (1-0) dug in.
Morse led off the seventh with a single and with two outs and Arias now on first after Morse was erased on a force play, pinch-hitter Ehire Adrianza lined a double to right to score Arias and he came home on a line double to left by Angel Pagan. Sandoval made it 7-6 with an infield single to short and after Posey singled to load the bases, Hunter Pence worked a walk to force home Belt with the tying run.
With new closer Addison Reed (0-1) on to start the ninth for the Diamondbacks, Belt got his third hit of the night with a line single to center and one out later, Posey unloaded this blast to left.
Sergio Romo came on to get his first save but made it interesting, allowing Montero’s leadoff homer in the ninth before settling in to get the final three outs. Jean Machi (1-0) got the win with 1.2 innings of relief work, allowing a hit and fanning three.
It was a tough night for Bumgarner, who went four innings and allowed four runs—all unearned—on six hits and two walks, while striking out three. Belt had three of San Francisco’s 12 hits, while Pagan, Posey and Crawford had two hits apiece.
Tags: San Francisco Giants